The Consumer Demand for Transparent Health Insurance

Healthcare insurance evokes very strong feelings for most U.S. consumers. Not surprisingly, a U.S. survey indicates that the vast majority (87%) would like to receive high-quality healthcare at a lower cost than is currently available. The priority is on comprehensive benefits, with particular emphasis on coverage for prescription drug, preventative care, and emergency care. Furthermore, a survey by Troubadour Research and Consulting reveals that most consumers would exchange personal information and even biometric data in return for lower-cost products.


Consumers’ current view of health insurers is noticeably dim. A Consumer Reports survey finds that a large majority believe that insurers are profiting excessively from a broken system. They want greater transparency and overwhelmingly support hospitals and insurers to provide accurate, upfront cost estimates to help them weigh health decisions. Yet, a majority of respondents would accept out-of-pocket health expense below a threshold of about $2,500.


Bankrate.com offers further evidence that out-of-pocket expense is often not the primary issue for consumers. Its survey shows that Americans are split in their preference for low out-of-pocket expenses vs. lower premiums. Of those surveyed, 36% would chose a plan offering lower deductibles and copays, but with higher monthly premiums, but 44% would chose the opposite option.


Overall, consumer sentiments seem to suggest that the stage is set for AI-powered health insurance products that can leverage patient and provider data to provide broad coverage and steer consumers to value-for-money providers. Upfront price transparency and low (although, not necessarily zero) out-of-pocket expenses would also be important considerations.

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